July 22, 2015 Career The Problem with Instagram Growing your social following is essential to growing your blog because it means that more and more people will have eyes on your content and in turn will be more likely to visit your site. That being said, it’s not true for all platforms. Recently, I once came across a site that had over 25K followers, but only 2K unique visitors/month and I was blown away. I just assumed that the traffic levels would be even with the amount of followers and engagement from one social platform, so I decided to do a little bit more research and what I found is that having a large Instagram following most definitely does not mean more blog traffic. Let’s talk about why and where to focus more attention to get more traffic to your blog. Instagram Feels Like a Mini Blog There’s beautiful images and tidbits of content that are easy to digest quickly. Plenty of readers view Instagram as a totally separate entity than a blog and I understand. I have to admit, there’s plenty of people I follow on Instagram that I didn’t even realize had a blog and there’s also plenty of big (dare I say famous) Instagrammers that don’t have blogs. Instagram is different than other social platforms because it allows you create original content that people want to share, right from your phone. No Links Allowed Instagram doesn’t allow clickable links within the captions, so it makes it harder for readers to click through to the post since the only place you can link from is your profile. Instagram was also originally created as a mobile app and at first, you couldn’t go to Instagram.com and view your images. That’s changed now, but people are used to viewing Instagram on a phone and are more likely to engage with a post from their phone than on their computer. Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest all started as websites that you viewed on your desktop. Now they all have mobile versions, but they make it easy to click through to get to the content you really want. [clickToTweet tweet=”More followers should mean more traffic, right? Not always…” quote=”A large Instagram following doesn’t always translate to more traffic.”] So, the point? People use Instagram differently than other social media platforms and that’s why traffic from Instagram usually isn’t as high as other networks even if your biggest following is on Instagram (that’s what’s true for me!). When you’re thinking about growing social networks, make sure your sole focus isn’t on Instagram. If that’s what you’re currently doing, you’ll likely be disappointed in the amount of traffic it brings to your blog. Take a look at your analytics and see where your current traffic is coming from and put some more attention there. Pinterest is my biggest referral and while it’s not as ‘cool’ to have a ton of followers there as it is on Instagram, it’s far more beneficial for my blog from a business stand point. Facebook and Twitter are neck in neck after that and Instagram is even further down the page for referral traffic. Interesting, right? Noticing these kind of trends and adapting to them is key in helping you get more traffic to your site and help you build your brand more strategically! So, which platforms bring you the most traffic? Any you’re having a hard time with?